May 21, 2015
WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Tom Reed (R, Corning) and Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D, CT), are announcing the introduction of bipartisan legislation which aims to put power back in the hands of parents when it comes to the education of their children.
Reed says that the EMPOWER (Enable More Parents to Opt-Out Without Endangering Resources) Act would allow parents to opt-out of annual standardized testing required for their children by No Child Left Behind, such as the assessments aligned with Common Core. According to Reed, as parents began to opt-out their children from testing, many school districts saw their federal funding in jeopardy, putting many school districts in difficult financial situations.
“Our school districts should not be punished because parents exercise this choice,” said Reed. “Tens of thousands of parents have already opted their children out of required public school testing and students and teachers alike have felt the financial sting for non-compliance. It simply isn’t fair to take away the resources they need or shift the financial burden to local property tax payers,” Reed continued.
DeLauro said: “Parents need to be empowered to make the educational decisions that suit their children the best. Testing can be a valuable diagnostic tool for identifying problems and determining how best to help children succeed. But making high-stakes tests rather than learning the centerpiece of the education system, and the one and only indicator of success or failure, is problematic.”